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Poem by Madison Julius Cawein
I. Morning Her rain-kissed face is fresh as rain, Is cool and fresh as a rain-wet leaf; She glimmers at my window-pane, And all my grief Becomes a feeble rushlight, seen no more When the gold of her gown sweeps in my door. II. Forenoon Great blurs of woodland waved with wind; Gray paths, down which October came, That now November's blasts have thinned And flecked with fiercer flame, Are her delight. She loves to lie Regarding with a gray-blue eye The far-off hills that hold the sky: And I I lie and gaze with her Beyond the autumn woods and ways Into the hope of coming days, The spring that nothing shall deter, That puts my soul in unison With what's to do and what is done. III. Noon Wild grapes that purple through Leaves that are golden; Brush-fires that pillar blue Woods, that, enfolden Deep in the haze of dreams, In resignation Give themselves up, it seems, To divination: Woods, that, ablaze with oak, That the crow flew in, Gaze through the brushwood smoke On their own ruin, And on the countenance of Death who stalks Amid their miles, While to himself he talks And smiles: Where, in their midst, Noon sits and holds Communion with their grays and golds, Transforming with her rays their golds and grays, And in my heart the memories of dead days. IV. Afternoon Wrought-iron hues of blood and bronze, Like some wild dawn's, Make fierce each leafy spire Of blackberry brier, Where, through their thorny fire, She goes, the Afternoon, from wood to wood, From crest to oak-crowned crest Of the high hill-lands, where the Morning stood With rosy-ribboned breast. Along the hills she takes the tangled path Unto the quiet close of day, Musing on what a lovely death she hath The unearthly golden beryl far away Banding the gradual west, Seen through cathedral columns of the pines And minster naves of woodlands arched with vines; The golden couch, spread of the setting sun, For her to lie, and me to gaze, upon. V. Evening The winds awake, And, whispering, shake The aster-flower whose doom is sealed; The sumach-bloom Bows down its plume; And, blossom-Bayard of the field, The chicory stout To the winds' wild rout Lifts up its ragged shield. Low in the west the Evening shows A ridge of rose; And, stepping Earthward from the hills, Where'er she goes The cricket wakes, and all the silence spills With reed-like music shaken from the weeds: She takes my hand And leads Softly my soul into the Fairyland, The wonder-world of gold and chrysolite, She builds there at the haunted edge of night. VI. Night Autumn woods the winds tramp down Sowing acorns left and right, Where, in rainy raiment, Night Tiptoes, rustling wild her gown Dripping in the moon's pale light, In the moonlight wan that hurries Trailing now a robe of cloud Now of glimmer, ghostly browed, Through the leaves whose wildness skurries, And whose tatters swirl and swarm Round her in her stormy starkness; She who takes my heart that leaps, That exults, and onward sweeps, Like a red leaf in the darkness And the tumult of the storm.
Madison Julius Cawein
Madison Julius Cawein's other poems:
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